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LWC releases March labor statistics that show Lafayette lost 500 jobs

Lafayette lost 1,700 jobs from March 2019 and 500 jobs from February 2020.
Department of Labor to release more unemployment numbers Thursday
Posted at 1:12 PM, Apr 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-17 14:12:54-04

LAFAYETTE, La. — The Louisiana Workforce Commission announced on Friday that Bureau of Labor and Statistics has released seasonally adjusted data for the state's Metropolitan Statistical Areas that show Lafayette has lost 1,700 jobs from March 2019 and 500 jobs from February 2020 likely due to the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).

LWC said that preliminary data released Friday by BLS shows that Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted civilian labor force, or the number of people who are employed in addition to those looking for work, increased by 61,721 from 2,090,667 in March 2019 to 2,152,388 in March 2020.

According to LWC, this is the second highest civilian labor force for the month of March in series history. From February 2020, Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted civilian labor force increased by 42,408.

The number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 6,682 from 1,996,265 in March 2019 to 2,002,947 in March 2020. From February 2020, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 2,821.

LWC states that Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased 2.4 percentage points from 4.5 in March 2019 to 6.9 in March 2020. From February 2020, Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased by 1.7 percentage points.

When compared nationally, LWC states, the United States saw a similar increase in its seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 0.9 percentage points from 3.5 percent in February 2020 to 4.4 percent in March 2020.

According to a statement from LWC Secretary Ava Dejoie:

The state’s trajectory was positive, however the pandemic impact on our entire country and our state is unprecedented. Beginning from the week ending March 29, the LWC has paid $287,394,973 directly to Louisiana residents via payouts from Louisiana’s Unemployment Insurance (UI) Trust Fund and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which includes Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC). The LWC will continue to process claims, and work with the federal government to get money directly to Louisiana residents as quickly as possible.

Among Louisiana’s MSAs in March 2020, according to LWC, seasonally adjusted data shows:
Alexandria lost 500 jobs from March 2019 and 100 jobs from February 2020.
Baton Rouge lost 1,100 jobs from March 2019 and 900 jobs from February 2020.
Hammond remained unchanged from March 2019, but lost 100 jobs from February 2020.
Houma lost 900 jobs from March 2019 and 900 jobs from February 2020.
Lafayette lost 1,700 jobs from March 2019 and 500 jobs from February 2020.
Lake Charles lost 5,800 jobs from March 2019 and 400 jobs from February 2020.
Monroe lost 1,000 jobs March 2019 and 200 jobs from February 2020.
New Orleans gained 1,600 jobs from March 2019, but lost 4,700 jobs from February 2020.
Shreveport lost 1,800 jobs from March 2019 and 700 jobs from February 2020.

You can read more about the state's MSA data from the LWC here.

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